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Kamal Jumblat to Assad: I Won’t Enter your Big Golden Cage | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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The meeting of Hafez Assad with Kamal Jumblat. (Asharq Al-Awsat)

Beirut- Tawfiq Sultan, a former official in the “National Movement”, recalls all the details of a meeting held between Lebanese Druze leader Kamal Jumblat and former Syrian President Hafez Assad, 40 years after the assassination of his comrade.

At this famous meeting, Jumblat dared to face Assad by rejecting a confederal system that includes Syria, Jordan and Lebanon. The Druze leader considered it an attempt to “end the Palestinian revolution.”

Sultan tells Asharq Al-Awsat about the details of the last meeting between the two men, in which Jumblat replied to Assad saying: “You have no freedoms, and I cannot live in a country that lacks freedoms… I will not enter your big golden cage.”

Jumblat also warned Assad from entering Lebanon, saying such an act would later offer Israel a pretext to set foot in the country and would “lead us to a dark tunnel.”

Sultan said Jumblat knew that the reasons behind the deployment of Syrian soldiers in Lebanon were not aimed at controlling the country, but rather annulling the independent Palestinian national decision-making and hitting their Revolution.

On March 16, 1977, one year following the meeting between the two men, a bullet silenced Kamal Jumblat near a Syrian checkpoint in Muallaka. The Syrian regime was accused of standing behind the assassination.

Sultan, who was vice-president of the National Movement, a front of Lebanese and Palestinian parties that supported the Palestinian Revolution, said: “Jumblat was martyred for supporting the sovereignty of Lebanon and the free Palestinian decision. He had a continuous obsession not to bargain on Lebanon’s sovereignty, neither strategically nor tactically. He was an Arab leader and the head of the Arab Front supporting the Palestinian Revolution. Nevertheless, he never accepted to disturb Lebanese sovereignty.”